To say we live in an exciting time is correct, but it would be more appropriate to say we live in the age of the free ride.
That’s right, there are a huge amount of free services available to us, some without limits, and all you need to enjoy them is access to the internet.
Many of these services are also available on mobile platforms, like smartphones and tablet computers; some even on Smart TVs and gaming consoles.
Here’s a list of The New Daily’s favourite services on the web that you can access for nix.
Of course there’s a free online photo-editing tool! Pic Monkey lets you add effects and filters to your favourite photos, giving them that professional finish.
Pic Monkey also integrates with your Dropbox, Facebook or OneDrive account, so you can work across devices to achieve stunning results on any platform. Take a browse through the tutorial blogs on the website and get creative.
The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy fans will know the Babel Fish as a tiny in-ear fish – eww! – that translates any language spoken to you directly in your ear. The online version is exactly the same. Choose the language you want to translate from and into, enter your text and hit ‘Translate’. It’s simple!
It’s perfect when you’re about to do a spot of international travel and want to translate something from a guidebook or foreign website. You could even fire it up on your mobile phone and have a live text chat with a friendly foreigner.
Long-haul flights can be the devil if you don’t plan ahead. Sure, everyone knows you can select meals or ambulatory services through a travel agent or the airline’s online booking website, but choosing your seat allocation can also make or break your flying experience.
Seat Guru not only shows you the seating chart of the aircraft for your chosen flight, but also features reviews on each seating position. An airline won’t tell you your seat has less leg room because the video system for the seat in front of you is stowed directly under it. Seat Guru will. Once you use it, you’ll never fly the same way again.
Take project management and team co-ordination to the next level with Trello. A free online tool, Trello allows any team, or even family, to communicate and set tasks, schedule meetings, upload and download files, just about anything.
Using boards, lists and cards to organise information, Trello is as versatile as it is flexible.
Pure and simple, this website provides you with all the rainstorm sound effects you could ever need. Want to snuggle up with a good book but need the appropriate atmosphere? Rainy Mood. Need to add a little je ne sais quoi to a How To Host A Murder dinner party? Rainy Mood. Sick of listening to the radio during your morning shower? Rainy Mood.
If you’re up for something a little different, you can add also some Daft Punk to your rainy soundscape. As you do.
As the name suggests, this website provides you with a unique email address that self-destructs in 10 minutes. Figuratively, of course.
Why would you need a 10-minute email address? To extend access to a time-limited offer – like free trial software – or sign up to a website that requires email validation. There are also other dubious uses, but nothing we’d ever condone. Enjoy!
More educational than service provider, Account Killer will guide you through the step-by-step requirements of deleting your account from a given service provider. This is especially handy for websites that like to bury their ‘delete account’ link in menus so deep you’ll think you’ve embarked on a quest for the Ark of the Covenant.
You’ll also find hints and tips to ensure that any content attached to your account, like Facebook or Twitter, which might have been indexed by search engines and become available to the public, never sees the light of day again. Just head on over to digitally disappear.
If you use a VPN service to watch streaming media from Netflix US, Hulu Plus, Amazon Prime et al, this online database is your new number one website. Just plug in the name of the movie or TV series you’d like to watch, and Can I Stream It? will tell you which services it’s available on and for what price.
There’s also a smartphone version of the site, along with a Google Chrome browser extension to make life really easy.
And here are some sites you’ve probably heard of, but we still can’t get enough of!
The original music streaming website and still the best. The free version of Pandora may come with ads, but the music channels you tune will become your favourites for life.
Based on the Music Genome Project, Pandora stations comprise tracks based on complex algorithms that analyse the attributes of each song, like melody, percussive makeup, the acoustic style of each instrument and more, rather than just the genre. If a certain song evokes a strong emotion from you, you can bet the entire station Pandora programs will have a similar effect.
If you’re not using IMDb to come up with questions for your next private movie trivia night with your friends, you’re doing it wrong. A resource of all things cinema, the Internet Movie Database is a font of endless facts, lists, trivia and media.
Enter the name of a movie, TV show, actor, director, you name it, and get everything from biographical information, star ratings and set photos, to entertainment news, cast lists, viewing recommendations and more. Prepare to lose a few hours once you get stuck in an IMDb hole.
With more than 4.6 million articles in English and millions more in other languages, Wikipedia is the only online encyclopedia you’ll ever need. Yes, anyone can edit articles, making erroneous changes galore, but Wikipedia’s editors are fast to move on published fallacies to restore order.
A great number of entries are written by professionals of the subject in question, and peer reviewed and edited to ensure accuracy. A number of universities now accept Wikipedia entries as legitimate research sources, making it a fantastic general study tool for students of any age.
You don’t need to invest in a hefty cloud service to manage all your personal files between devices. Just sign up for a basic Dropbox account, download the necessary software and you’re on your way. Basic access gives you 2Gb of storage, which is ideal for personal photos, videos, music, documents and more.
Your Dropbox folder is accessible from your computer’s hard drive or via their website interface, as well as mobile devices. Download the Dropbox app to your smartphone or tablet computer and you have access to files on the move, allowing you to share individual files and folders as well.